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LI girl, 11, helps to design fashion line

Brielle Caro, 11, of Smithtown, holding the

Brielle Caro, 11, of Smithtown, holding the "Rainbow" gown at Geraci Condello in St. James which she helped design to benefit Angela's House. (Aug. 29, 2012) Credit: Jennifer Berger

Brielle Caro of Smithtown isn't your typical 11-year-old.

Sure, she loves Selena Gomez and One Direction like many young girls her age, but in her spare time, you'll find her drawing up fashion designs for charity.

"I wasn't always into drawing, painting and crafts," she said. "My mom bought me a fashion kit and that made me want to learn. So I made drawings and started playing with fabrics."

As Caro began designing more, her mother, Karin, introduced her to designer Madeline Grudens, owner of Geraci Condello in St. James.

Grudens was so impressed with her artistic ability that she took her on as an apprentice, which is where you'll find Caro on Saturdays during the school year.

"She has great ideas and intuition," said Condello. "As a young person, she is learning and realizing what resources are available and what can be done."

Some of Caro's designs include the elements, for example, lightning or rain, so they used beads to make a lightning bolt or rain drops on an evening gown.

Together, Caro and Condello (pictured above) created an elegant fashion line of dresses to be showcased at Brielle's Fairytale Fashions, a fashion show on Sept. 27 at Oheka Castle benefiting Angela's House, a Long Island-based nonprofit organization that assists families caring for medically frail children. A portion of gown proceeds will go to Angela's House.

"I just want to help other kids," said Caro. "It's something I learned about from my mom and I thought it was a good way to give back."

Picture: Brielle Caro, 11, of Smithtown with the "Rainbow" gown she helped design for Brielle's Fairytale Fashions show.


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